Only one woman was employed in the production of the Prodromus. Born in 1807, Theresa Susannah Eunice Poole was commissioned in July 1861 to colour plate seven of the Museum Memoirs, later published as plate 33 in the Prodromus.
Theresa came to Melbourne as an established artist, having exhibited and presented commissions in South Australia, New South Wales and Tasmania. She is perhaps better known under the name of her first marriage, as Theresa Walker.
Although an initial sum of £10 per 1000 plates was agreed upon with Frederick McCoy, the complexity of the task eventually led to a substantial increase to £10 per 100, 'a higher price than hither to paid.'
McCoy sent the plates, in packages of 100, via the Sandridge rail to Poole's Williamstown home. As she worked from Bartholomew's original colour illustration, McCoy's regular letters guided quality control, keeping her away from artistic flourishes and within the scientific register: 'yellow being much too obtrusive & strong on the sides of several; the scarlet on edge of front dorsal fin is rather too thick and would be better if softened a little in the others, and the black spots are occasionally rather too large & heavy.'
Poole completed the 1000 plates in November 1861. Although McCoy did not employ her again, she offered 'to perpetuate Professor McCoy's features in wax', but McCoy directed his secretary to respond that 'his modesty compels him to decline with many thanks to inflict his appearance on posterity.'